On 3 May 2017, Lonza successfully completed the acquisition of PharmaCell B.V., one of the most-respected cell and gene contract manufacturers in Europe with employees in Maastricht and Geleen (NL). In 2016 PharmaCell had sales of EUR 11 million.
PharmaCell was primarily selected due to its core expertise in autologous cell and gene therapy manufacturing, which includes experience with two commercial Advanced Therapy Medicinal Products (ATMPs)-licensed products. Autologous therapies use a patient’s own cells.
“PharmaCell’s position in the market complements Lonza’s leadership position in the allogeneic cell manufacturing market,” said Andreas Weiler, Head of Emerging Technologies at Lonza. “This acquisition broadens Lonza’s capabilities in Europe and positions Lonza as the only contract development and manufacturing organization to offer an international cell and gene therapy manufacturing network, spanning the United States, Europe and Asia.”
PharmaCell, established in 2005 when cell manufacturing was still in its infancy, has since been the manufacturer of the only two European-approved commercial cell therapy products. PharmaCell has more than 6,000 m2 of GMP clean rooms, QC and other support spaces.
Alexander Vos, CEO of PharmaCell commented: “Over the last seven years, we have been able to contract many of the blue-chip cell therapy companies. I am proud of my team, which has been able to deliver high-quality GMP-manufacturing services in this emerging and challenging field.”
Achelous Partners LLC served as financial advisers to PharmaCell on the transaction. Boels Zanders acted as PharmaCell’s legal counsel.